Welcome fellow Commoners,
This week I’m looking backwards at sites that have been left dormant on the Commons and offer a kind of “distant reading. The title of this post comes from the title of one of those sites, dormant for over five years. (BTW: If anyone out there is looking for a corpus to explore, I’ve only scratched the surface here. Like many of the sites that will be referenced in this post, this is a hint at a project that could be. But it’s also a fascinating glimpse at the history of this digital community)
The idea comes from me doing some “spring cleaning” in my Commons account–removing myself from groups that have been inactive for years or from sites I no longer administer.
It got me thinking about the sites on the Commons that haven’t been deleted and persist years since they’ve been touched. The homepage pushes the most recently active sites, but what can we learn from looking at the opposite side of that spectrum?
I decided to make a list of the titles and post it here. I’ve organized them loosely around themes I noticed. These themes suggest experiences that we Commoners share–truly what we have “in common.” I think they also represent opportunities: they are ideas, ready for someone to pick up again.
To make the list I searched the Commons for sites that haven’t been active in more than three years, going all the way back to 2009 when The Commons first went live. I haven’t included titles that are simply people’s names, opting to share those which are more suggestive. Many of the actual sites are blank, with the default sample pages or simply an error apologizing for not finding anything. Sometimes the sites have content, though. Some are time capsules, others perplexing, funny, poignant, sad, self-depreciating, infuriating.
I’m interested in what you all see.
All the best,
Many sites suggest a traveling narrative:
Beyond the Pale
path less traveled by
Just Passing By
Odysseys and Homelands (sic)
Others revel in their unfinished-ness:
In Medias Res
Poems in Progress
Always a Working Title
Some capture a romantic or metaphysical self:
The Dilated Soul
Collecting the Self
Inventing the Self
Many, like this list, suggest a wandering mind:
Notes to myself
Thoughts and Musings
ocasional intrpspections on the world…
Asymmetrical Thoughts and Other Freudian Slips.
Some either are unfinished projects or sound like them:
Erotic Lit and etc
Delicious Food for Swallowing (actually about food that is easy to swallow)
Quant Made Fun
A Minor Map
Measure of Justice
Queer Lines of Communication Digital Scrapbook
1960-1985 Computer Historical Moments for
Wrestling Freedom from a Realm of Necessity
Unsurprisingly, technology is a common theme:
Luddite No Mas
Blog about to Bloom
super user dood
Code. Play. KILL.
Mistakes I’ve Made in WordPress So Far
Teaching is also a common theme, although there are clearly sub-themes in this group:
Things I say to my BlackBoard students
If I wasn’t a teacher…
Raised by CUNY
Adventures in Teaching
My “academic” self
Trials and Tribulations of a Library Science Stude (sic)
But there’s excitement for CUNY, too:
My Professors..I adore and respect a lot!
LETS IMPROVE ENGLISH (sic)
And then there’s the grab-bag category:
Thanks for all the fish
The Sound of the Stick
It seems we are at an impass (sic)
The People’s Suitcase
When it Rains…
Departed but not gone
Planning for the future
Place to Try Things Out
Birds of a Feather
Feed Me Seymour!
DId We Break It
It Cannot be Trivial
In the Know How and Who
In Spite of Kryptonite
always a bridesmaid
Consequence of the Four Incapacities